Edward Wood – Chefslocker founder in profile
In this addition of featured friends, I managed to catch up with super-busy chef turned entrepreneur Edward Wood, founder of Chefslocker.
Edward spent over 10 years working as a chef when he decided to try his hand at something different.
“I’d always used Japanese Knives in the kitchen and always received a lot of interest from other Chefs. I’d occasionally sourced very particular knives for others and two years ago Chefslocker was born.
To complement the knives I personally developed a range of leather knife rolls, aprons and sourced a range of unique products to satisfy the needs and lifestyle of a Modern Chef.
In 2017, through my contacts in Japan and requests from a number of Michelin Chefs we started importing the coveted Konro Grill to the UK. Made exclusively in Ishikawa prefecture, these little grills are largely mined and put together by hand – Made from a Diatomite Earth (fossilized plankton) they are incredibly good insulators, hard wearing and perfectly suited to a commercial kitchen – Also rare, with the material being seasonal and production limited, there is often a waiting list.
Grills and now the Binchotan Charcoal that fuels them now accounts for most of our business and things are always evolving! Early 2018 we are launching a range of Japanese Schichirin BBQ’s and are working closely with competitive BBQ teams to raise the profile and benefits of open fire cooking.”
To get to know Edward a little bit more, he was kind enough to answer some questions about himself and the success and future of Chefslocker.
What was your inspiration to open your knife and supplies business?
“When working in Girona (Spain) when I was 21, I came across the most amazing knife shop – Like nothing I’d ever seen before!
I picked up a very basic Japanese carbon steel Santoku Knife (which still serves me today)”
Do you have a favorite knife?
“My original Aogami (Blue carbon steel) Santoku. Still as sharp as it ever was!!”
“I love the creative side of things, developing and sourcing exciting new products and of course connecting with and
meeting the needs of some truly inspirational chefs that are leading the industry.”
What have been the highlights so far?
“Our Grills were featured on Channel 4’s ‘A very British Hotel’ (Dinner By Heston Blumenthal),
Ketchup or HP?
“Ketchup, but only with crispy smoked streaky bacon :)”
If you have any, what do you like to do in your spare time?
Because you have been a chef do you still work in the kitchen?
Do you like to cook at home?
“Initially, I wanted to keep one foot in the kitchen but knew it wouldn’t take long before I got sucked back in! Now, there is simply not enough hours in the day.
I still love the craft of cooking but it’s usually something quick and very simple. An Asian stir fry with bags of colour and fresh flavours.”
Favourite restaurants? Do you get a chance to eat out much?
“I really don’t get out as often as I would like to. I get invited to some incredible places and the bucket list is always growing!
I’ve been fortunate enough to eat in some fantastic places. Most memorable: Gaston Acurio’s ‘Chicha’ in Arequipa (Peru)
Here in the UK, Hibiscus in Ludlow when Claude Bosi was at the helm, Mr Underhills – again in Ludlow and unfortunately now closed.
Most recently, A brilliant meal at the two Rosette Norbury Coach House on the Shropshire border”
Best culinary tip:
“Always buy the best quality you can afford, look after your equipment and always keep your knives Sharp!”
Future plans for Chefslocker:
“Keep offering Chefs the very best tools for the job, source and develop new/innovative products and maybe a retail shop?
We would also like to develop our BBQ offering to the retail market”
GO SHOPPING !! Website Click Here: www.chefslocker.co.uk